It is important to get clarity up front what you want from your flying so we don’t waste your time or money on something that is not a good idea. For example, the fastest and cheapest way for you to go skiing and see family in Virginia is to fly commercial. The second best way will be to drive. But, if adventure is the goal, the more interesting way would be to fly your own aircraft. But this will not save you time or money. Like going by motorcycle, you will be less tolerant of darkness and bad weather. Low clouds can have you stuck for days, unless you invest in an instrument rating and upgrade to an aircraft that can fly in the blind.
So now that I have shot down any notion of the practicality of personal flight, if you are ready to get started learning to fly ‘just for the fun of it’ we can get going. The aircraft that we mainly use to get people their Sport Pilot and Private Pilot certificates are shown in this video:
If it looks like fun, I can turn you on to some study material and get you lined up for an intro flight lesson. And yes, SOMETIMES it does save time and gas versus driving—but most often not. You just can’t count on it like the dependable day or night all-weather cabability of ground-based transportation, or the fast speed of commercial flying coupled with advanced technology and training that lets those planes fly when no smaller planes can.